Many in the small village of Waitarere and nearby Levin are expected to attend a candlelight vigil tonight in remembrance of 10-year-old boy Alex Fisher.
His body was found last Thursday in the dunes of Waitarere Beach after a three day search.
The post-mortem has revealed he suffered head trauma and a homicide investigation is underway.
Horowhenua District Mayor Brendan Duffy said Alex's death had put a scar on the community and this evening's event would help those affected.
"I use the word therapeutic because I think that's what it is. People don't know what to do, don't know how to help, and need to find some way to offer an expression. I'm really proud of the community out there who've seen this opportunity as a way of responding."
Mr Duffy did not expect the Fisher family to attend but said a significant number of people from the 500 strong village of Waitarere would be there.
"This will be the heart and soul of the community coming out. I'd imagine there'll be quite a number of people from Levin that will go out as well.
"I wouldn't expect the family to be there, to be honest I think it's completely out of their comfort zone."
The vigil is at 7pm at the Waitarere Domain.
A crowd funding webpage set up to support Alex Fisher's family has raised more than $7800.
The Givealittle page set up on Thursday to help Alex's family has already had over 250 donations.
"Let's help Alex Fisher's family during this absolutely tragic time. Nothing can bring their boy back but we can try to ease their load. Please donate anything you're able to spare. All Funds will go to his immediate family to help them with any on-going financial costs that come with dealing with the loss of their child," the page bio said.
In their first public statement following his death his family thanked the community who had donated food, money, time and prayers and said it had shown how terrific the local community was.